The country's leading early childhood education provider, Kidicorp Limited will today announce its new status as a not-for-profit charity and will change their name to Best Start.

Tauranga locals Chloe and Wayne Wright founded the organisation almost 20 years ago and have now restructured under the Wright Family Foundation, a non-profit registered charity.

"Best Start is geared towards what we always intended - providing the best start in life for the children who attend our centres and use our services, as well as encouraging engagment in ECE where the needs are greatest," explained Mrs Wright.

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"Profit and returns have never been a priority for us, so this seemed to be the natural and right thing to do."

There are 256 centres spread across the country from Kaitaia to Invercargill and employs around 4800 staff and educates for more than 19,000 children.

Mr Wright said in the statement that although Kidicorp would have presented significant value to outside investors, they wanted to protect the quality features built up over the years.

The new name is intended to wipe out concerns that the previous Kidicorp name sent a confusing message to parents, staff, academics and regulators.

The surprise announcement will be made to 300 Kidicorp leaders at the company's annual conference at Auckland Airport's Holiday Inn late today.